In Touch Daily Devotional
by Dr. Charles Stanley
February 21, 2008 – Overcoming Habitual Sin – Titus 2:11-14
Sin plays no favorites. It works its way into everyone’s life without regard to age, race, or economic status. Regardless of the form it takes, it always tempts us to choose our own way. Rebellion is harmful and addictive. Repetitions of sinful behavior lead to more of the same, until the action is so entrenched that we cannot stop. We become enslaved.
The descent into a pattern of disobedience begins in our minds. Once our thinking is involved, the influence extends to our behavior, eventually progressing until we are more entrenched than we ever imagined. Deception permeates the whole process. We tell ourselves there is no harm in what we’re doing. After all, other people behave the same way.
Sin’s demands keep increasing, and yet its benefits are only short-term. Eventually, we experience emptiness instead of satisfaction, pain in place of comfort, and loss rather than gain. Habitual sin splits our mind and emotions. Then we spend less time meeting our responsibilities and more time satisfying cravings. Our care and concern for others diminishes too. Over time, feelings of guilt and entrapment can take their toll and lead to a desire to self-destruct.
Faith in Jesus sets us free from sin’s domination. Through the Holy Spirit, we have the power to say no to the habits that control us. The road to freedom starts with confession, followed by an admission that we cannot stop on our own. Committing to follow God’s direction is next. The struggle may be fierce, but in Jesus, the victory is assured (1 Corinthians 15:57).
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